Afraid to purchase outdoor apparel in the past that bills itself as “eco-friendly” or “sustainable” because you didn’t think it would function as well as the regular gear? Well now, with advances in resource management and textile technology, you can upgrade most of your essentials to stuff that leaves much less of an impact on the planet, while still providing the performance you’ve grown to rely on in the wilderness. Tons of companies are now taking the call to create sustainable outdoor gear. This apparel is the coolest, most functional out there, so there’s no excuse not to upgrade.
Check out our top sustainable outdoor gear picks. These brands are pushing apparel construction in a way that puts the planet first. (Just don’t forget to recycle your old gear, like at Green Guru or Patagonia’s Worn Wear program.)
Sustainable Outdoor Gear Made From Recycled Layers
1. Coalatree Evolution Hoodie
This sustainably built hoodie is made partly from spent coffee grounds mixed with melted-down plastic bottles to create a soft, water-repellent fabric. Nice details include thumbholes and a kangaroo pouch that turns it into a pillow.
2. Appalachian Gear Company’s All-Paca Crew
Made from 100 percent alpaca yarn responsibly sourced from Peru, this fabric makes a superb insulator—lightweight, packable, breathable, and extremely fast-drying.
3. Jack Wolfskin JWP Shell
This carbon-conscious shell is built with 90 percent Bluesign-approved textiles, uses a 100 percent recycled waterproof and stretchy membrane, and is completely PFC-free. It’s also ultralight, weighing a mere 14 ounces.
4. Prana Alameda Pants
Casual cool that’s ready for adventure plus a build from recycled nylon called ReZion make these ideal for your next wilderness trek. The durable Bluesign-approved stretch fabric has a PFC-free, water-resistant coating that’s still plenty soft to the touch.
5. Fjällräven Samlaren Cap
Fjällräven’s new Samlaren Collection uses fabrics left over from the production of other garments. This limited-edition hat is made from durable, dense-woven poly-cotton on front and bill, with a lighter cut on top and sides for better breathability.
6. Patagonia Regenerative Organic Pilot Cotton Snap Sweatshirt
Patagonia’s Regenerative Organic Certified pilot program deindustrializes water- and chemical-intensive cotton production with more holistic Earth- and farmer-friendly practices that reduce (and recapture) carbon—and deliver comfy, versatile cotton goods like this sweatshirt.
7. Salomon Index.01
The stylish all-white running shoe is 100 percent recyclable, entirely constructed from special TPU blends easily ground up for reuse. And its rockered, nitrogen-infused sole performs well, helping you glide easily over mixed running surfaces.
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